Honda Racing Team Andorra Report

honda racingToni Bou – Repsol Montesa HRC on board his factory Cota 4RT recorded an important victory on the second day of the Grand Prix of Andorra to close within a single point of the series lead.


Bou had finished as runner-up to Adam Raga – Gas Gas on the opening day in Sant Julia de Loria, but turned the tables on his arch-rival and compatriot at a critical stage in the title fight and just ahead of next weekend’s Spanish and home GP.


Takahisa Fujinami – Repsol Montesa HRC recorded two fifth place finishes to maintain third spot in the general standings, whilst Albert Cabestany – Sherco was twice third in Andorra to complete two all Spanish podiums.


The small principality of Andorra has gained a reputation of being not only the highest venue on the annual tour, but also one of the toughest thanks to the steep and rocky terrain that shadows the town of Sant Julia de Loria situated close to the Spanish border. Andorra first hosted a Trial Grand Prix back in 1992 and since then has only been absent a few times from the series right up until the current edition that was played out over this weekend.


Bou did not get off to the best of starts on Saturday morning when he took a five in the second section of the day. This was to hand an early advantage to Raga, and one that Toni would fight hard to reduce aboard his factory four-stroke machine with a good level of success.


Both Bou and Raga incurred two time penalties each as they misjudged the sheer length and severity of the course and impact of the increased eighteen sections on the opening lap.


Heading into the second and closing lap on day one, Bou trailed Raga by just two marks and thanks to incredible riding in the rocky hazards managed to draw level with his arch-rival with just three sections remaining. However Toni’s hard work was to be undone in section sixteen where his five mark loss was to effectively hand Raga his third win in a row. Fujinami also battled hard throughout in the hot conditions and was unlucky to miss out on a top four finish on this occasion due to a most cleans tiebreak with Jeroni Fajardo – Beta.


Toni was back at his best on the second day of competition and took control of the event from the outset with a series of confidence building rides, including the three sections that had been modified overnight. Raga in contrast looked to be feeling the pressure and lost five marks in each of two hazards late on the first lap to give Bou a ten mark lead as the riders headed out around the course for one last time.


Bou was not about to pass up the invitation to take his second win of the season to date and closed out with an equally impressive second lap performance. His lap total of two marks put him on five for the day, which saw him take the victory by a twelve mark cushion over Raga and to move within a point of his main title rival before they resume battle at their home round next weekend.



Toni Bou “Today was a very important win for me, as if Adam (Raga) had won today he would have had four wins in a row and he would have moved seven points ahead in the championship with five rounds to go. I had a great feeling on the bike today and my confidence was high, when I saw Adam make the mistakes on the first lap, I knew I could go on to take the win. Adam is riding well, and with the new rules and the sections not being so difficult, it is very hard for me at the moment. Anyway with the win today, I can now be ready to fight again next weekend, when I hope I can regain the championship lead.”


Takahisa Fujinami “It has not been a good weekend overall, although in some way I have been happy with my riding, well apart from the mistakes that have prevented reaching my goal of being on the podium both days. After yesterday I was satisfied with my first lap today and was confident that I could take a top three place, but then I made three fives in the last part of the competition that cost me a lot. I want to forget about Andorra and to think only about the next round in Spain. Thankfully I am still third in the championship at the moment at least.”